Thursday, February 10, 2005

We Don't Need No Stinkin' Laws

Look what the House of Representatives passed today: REAL ID Act of 2005. Designed to keep terrorists from getting drivers licenses, the act has a few other interesting features. Like Section 102:


Section 102(c) of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 (8 U.S.C. 1103 note) is amended to read as follows:

(c) Waiver-

(1) IN GENERAL- Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the Secretary of Homeland Security shall have the authority to waive, and shall waive, all laws such Secretary, in such Secretary's sole discretion, determines necessary to ensure expeditious construction of the barriers and roads under this section.

(2) NO JUDICIAL REVIEW- Notwithstanding any other provision of law (statutory or nonstatutory), no court shall have jurisdiction--
(A) to hear any cause or claim arising from any action undertaken, or any decision made, by the Secretary of Homeland Security pursuant to paragraph (1); or

(B) to order compensatory, declaratory, injunctive, equitable, or any other relief for damage alleged to arise from any such action or decision.'.
What does all that mean? Supposed intended to expedite construction of the three mile wall on the US-Mexican border near San Diego (to keep out terrorists), this section allows the Secretary of Homeland security to waive any law (environmental, workplace safety, etc.) if he determines it's necessary for national security -- for any construction along any part of the US border.

Aside from the fact that border areas contain border areas an enormous amount of protected federal lands, including national parks, wildlife refuges, forests and wilderness areas, we're also talking about workplace safety regulations.

Takes too long to get a trenchbox for a 12 foot deep trench? Too bad! We're fightin' a war here.

Hearing protection? "I can't hear you."

Oh, and don't bother trying to sue anyone -- even if you get hurt. Section 102 waives judicial review as well. (Most judges appointed prior to 2001 are known terrorist sympathizers.)

Hell, maybe they should just build the whole thing out of asbestos.

Luckily, it still has to be passed by the Senate which has been known on occasion to have some respect for the rule of law.

And we're only three weeks into this administration.....